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Smilin' Through (1941)

Passed  -  Musical | War | Fantasy  -  October 1941 (USA)
6.6
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 221 users  
Reviews: 11 user | 3 critic

John Carteret has long been depressed and lonely, because, at his wedding years ago, his bride, Moonyean, was murdered. He accepts into his house Kathleen, the 5 year old orphaned niece of ... See full summary »

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(screen play), (screen play), 4 more credits »
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Title: Smilin' Through (1941)

Smilin' Through (1941) on IMDb 6.6/10

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Gene Raymond ...
Kenneth 'Ken' Wayne / Jeremy 'Jerry' Wayne
Ian Hunter ...
Frances Robinson ...
Ellen
Patrick O'Moore ...
Eric Lonsdale ...
Charles, Kenneth's Batman
Jackie Horner ...
David Clyde ...
Sexton
Frances Carson ...
Dowager
Ruth Rickaby ...
Woman
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Storyline

John Carteret has long been depressed and lonely, because, at his wedding years ago, his bride, Moonyean, was murdered. He accepts into his house Kathleen, the 5 year old orphaned niece of Moonyean, and she quickly grows up to look just like her aunt. Kathleen meets and falls in love with a mysterious stranger from America, Kenneth Wayne. When John hears of this he is furious, and we learn that it was Kenneth's father, Jeremy, who had killed Moonyean years before. John carries his grudge against Jeremy to the new generation, and threatens to ruin his niece's happiness, but he softens in the end. Written by John Oswalt <jao@jao.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Jeanette MacDonald and husband Gene Raymond in their only screen collaboration! Their eyes met...and they knew they were meant for each other!


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

October 1941 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Catene del passato  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Oliver T. Marsh was to be director of photography but died of a heart attack on 5 May 1941. It is unclear if he actually did any filming. See more »

Quotes

Kenneth: There's only one thing missing from this picnic. Don't you have any ants in England?
Kathleen: I have some in Ireland, but I never hear from them.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in You Can't Fool a Camera (1941) See more »

Soundtracks

Smilin' Through
(1918) (uncredited)
Written by Arthur A. Penn
Played during the opening credits and as background music often
Sung by Jeanette MacDonald in the flashback scene and danced to by Jeanette MacDonald and Brian Aherne
Reprised offscreen by Jeanette MacDonald at the end
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Through time, dimension, and space
25 March 2006 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

It seems to be a general consensus on the board that this version is the inferior of the Norma Shearer-Leslie Howard-Fredric March version previously done by MGM a decade before. Without having seen that one, my guess is that is probably correct because those are all better players.

I was surprised to learn that originally Jeanette was given her choice of leading men as she was in San Francisco and picked Gable and Tracy for their parts. For Smilin' Through she originally had as her choices James Stewart and Robert Taylor. Then both dropped out and Jeanette had to settle for the B team.

The Jeanette MacDonald/Nelson Eddy joint biography by Sharon Rich which is the source of that information doesn't say which parts Taylor and Stewart were to play. But it's sure interesting to speculate who was to play John Carteret and who was to play Jeremy/Kenneth Wayne.

So Jeanette did the film with Brian Aherne and her husband Gene Raymond. Smilin' Through created no public demand for a reteaming of Mr.&Mrs. Raymond.

Smilin' Through was written by and starred Jane Cowl on Broadway. Jane, Norma, and Jeanette play Kathleen and her aunt Moonyean. Moonyean was the love of John Carteret and was killed literally at the church altar on her wedding day by a jealous suitor Jeremy Wayne. Years later her niece Kathleen comes to live with her aunt's brokenhearted fiancé Carteret. And wouldn't you know it, she falls in love with Kenneth Wayne, son of the homicidal Jeremy.

One thing though that neither Jane Cowl or Norma Shearer could bring to the dual part was Jeanette MacDonald's soprano. The musical gene was passed down in this family if the homicidal one wasn't passed down in the Wayne family. Jeanette sings some wonderful standards identified with the British Isles like the title song, Drink to Me Only With Thine Eyes, The Kerry Dance, There's a Long Long Trail a Winding, and Just a Little Love, a Little Kiss. But my favorite is Land of Hope and Glory sung at a church service here and marched to by thousands of graduating classes on both sides of the Atlantic.

If Jeanette's acting wasn't up to snuff, there wasn't anything wrong with her singing voice. But perhaps maybe only her fans should be looking to watch Smilin' Through.


13 of 17 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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